NELSPRUIT – A 29-year-old Lerato Kalaku has been sentenced by the Balfour Regional Court for fatally stabbing his co-worker, Lindani Ephraim Mhlungu, aged 27 in Greylingstad.
The court heard that both Kalaku and Mhlungu worked together at a farm at Greylingstad where they resided in the same house at the farm but in different rooms.
On 23 September 2021, the two were tasked to fix the fence away from other employees, and that is where an altercation ensued that turned violent. Kalaku, who is originally from Lesotho, is said to have illegally entered the Republic of South Africa. On the day in question (23 September 2021) he stabbed Mhlungu 37 times in his upper body. The attack was so aggressive in such a way that he ended up sustaining a skull fracture and broken neck.
After the attack, it is said that the victim called the farm owner using his cell phone to report the ordeal, then from there he became unconscious. The farm owner who was out of the province at the time, summoned other employees to investigate but he was found unconscious in the pool of blood holding a mobile phone.
Police and Emergency Services were summoned to the scene but the victim was certified dead on the scene. Members of the police from Greylingstad launched a manhunt for Kalaku where they traced and arrested him eight hours after the murder.
Police successfully opposed bail and the accused has since been behind bars from the day of his arrest until he was convicted and sentenced to the 12 years direct imprisonment yesterday, 14 September 2022.
The Provincial Commissioner of the SAPS in Mpumalanga, Lieutenant General Semakaleng Daphney Manamela acknowledged the outstanding work by everyone who positively contributed in the case. “At last justice has been served to the Mhlungu family. We applaud the vital role played by the Detective team, the Prosecution team and the Judiciary which culminated into the sentence” said the General.
Source: South African Police Service